silence and selfhood

Previously, my struggle, tears, sadnesses had been viewed with a kind of courageous vulnerability. One woman told me, that first semester, that she wanted to sit at my table to see when I cry, because that would signal to her that she should be feeling more than she is. When even my emotions, my falling-apart-ness, were viewed as leadership, I was always on display. When I pointed out that such pedestals are tall and shaky and easy to fall off, people thought that even the falling was beautiful and taught them about themselves, so I was never allowed to fully crash off the pedestal. When I cried that it’s lonely on a pedestal, people said they were there for me, but it was clear that they were there to keep me on the pedestal. Now, students are finally starting to see that my struggle is real and the cost is deep. They still come to me with problems and questions, but more quietly. Most no longer approach me as a rockstar sage, but come to me as a person. They ask how I’m doing, too.


Read full article here – highly recommended:


Is morality the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil?

“For a moralistic person, “Thou shalt not steal” just means don’t take anything that obviously belongs to somebody else. For a merciful person, “Thou shalt not steal” means that you chide yourself every time you find out that somebody else needed something that you could have given to them even though there was no moral obligation for you to do so.”

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For Comic-Con’s street preachers, hate gets results

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“These men weren’t trolls. They were the result of a tradition that’s defined “evangelism” as the equivalent of an internet pop-up ad: as long as somebody sees it, you’ve done your job.

An hour or two later, I met a small woman passing out tracts far from the intersections most preachers occupied. Her self-appointed mission, as far as I could tell, was to undo the damage caused down the street. ‘We’re not like those Christians who preach hate to everyone,’ she assured me. Then she managed to do something I had not seen all day: explain why I should love the thing she was willing to stand in the San Diego sun for hours to share.”


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The Problem With Assuming Liberal Christians Hate the Bible

“Liberal Christians aren’t liberal in spite of the Bible, but because of it. They don’t pursue justice for LGBT people because they haven’t read Scripture, but precisely because they have. And in the arc of the narrative of God’s interaction with humanity, liberal Christians find a radical expansiveness, an urgent desire to broaden the embrace of God’s hospitality to include those whom the religious big shots are always kicking to the sidelines.”


Photo by: Patrick Feller


Rachel Held Evans: Missing the Mark on Sexual Ethics

(A response to this post:


I linked to RHE’s post yesterday and found this critique to be on point. The (long overdue) discussion around Christianity and sexuality is getting really interesting (and I mean that in the best way possible).

“The thing is, Rachel is still saying that sex should be saved for marriage, just like I was taught growing up. And so I have to ask—why? Why should sex be saved for marriage? I don’t personally see any conflict between premarital sex and things Rachel describes above—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control, and loving one’s neighbors.”


Sex and the Path of Holiness

LOVE this post!

“Holiness isn’t about sticking to a list of rules. It isn’t something you either have or don’t have, keep or lose. It’s a way of life, filled with twists and turns, mistakes and growth, uncertainty and reward. And, (to make matters even worse for the fundamentalists), a holy lifestyle often looks different from person to person, though the fruit of the Spirit is the same.”


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Christians & Masturbation: Seven Perspectives

A wide range of perspectives presented here on the topic of masturbation.

One of my favorites (from Dianna Anderson): “We make mistakes in christendom when we assume that masturbation is problematic for some, so no one, ever, should do this private thing. That’s a problem, because my lines about what is sinful are not your lines, and making you conform to my lines in something as intensely complicated as sexuality won’t end well.”


Photo by: flyzipper